Field Hockey Crushes Keene, Loses OT Thriller to Jumbos
Amherst field hockey went 1-1 this week, thoroughly demolishing Keene State University before losing a close game to NESCAC foe Tufts 2-1 in overtime.
On Wednesday, Sept. 14, the Mammoths finally took to Hill Field — the game was scheduled for Tuesday night but postponed to Wednesday due to weather — for a game under the lights against the Keene State Owls. Unfortunately for Keene, the extra 24 hours of preparation didn’t do them much good, as the Mammoths put their foot on the gas and never slowed down en route to a 6-0 win.
The first Mammoth goal came with just over five minutes to go in the first quarter, when Muffie Mazambani ’24 redirected an Abbey Kays ’25 shot past the Owls’ netminder to open the scoring. While it took a little longer for the Mammoths to take control of the game on the scoreboard, they dominated play for much of the second quarter before Kat Mason ’25 doubled the lead with a stand-out solo effort. Mason weaved her way through three defenders before slotting home a low shot to make it 2-0.
Despite notching 17 shots to Keene’s one, the Mammoths couldn’t convert those frequent chances into more goals in the first half; however, whatever Head Coach Carol Knerr said during halftime seemed to have worked, as the team came out firing in half number two. They notched three goals on 10 shots in the third quarter, with Jackie D’Alleva ’23 contributing two of them from close range to put the game out of reach. Mazambani put the icing on the cake with her second tally in the fourth quarter, setting the final margin of victory at six. The Mammoths outshot the Owls 30-1 in the contest and led 10-2 in penalty corners.
Against Tufts on Saturday, however, in their second game of the week, the Mammoths didn’t find as much offensive success. After a tight first half that saw neither team score nor gain the better of play, Tufts opened the scoring off a penalty corner.
In response, the Mammoths turned up the heat, gaining much of the momentum and enjoying many of the offensive opportunities from that point forward. They were rewarded for their effort early in the fourth quarter, when a string of three consecutive corners finally resulted in a goal: Mazambani played the corner to Sage Geyer ’23E, who tapped it to classmate Beth Williamson ’23E. She found a wide-open Kays, who put the ball in the goal to tie the game.
After the goal, the Mammoths didn’t let up, but the game-winner just wouldn’t come. With the game tied, the teams headed to overtime, where the Mammoths again dominated the shot opportunities but could not find the back of the net. Five minutes into overtime, a Jumbos goal against the run of play — the Mammoths outshot the Jumbos 16-10, had a 9-4 advantage in terms of shots on goal, and held a 12-6 advantage in corners on the day — put the Mammoths away for good, sending them home with a 2-1 loss.
The Mammoths will look to right the ship this coming week with three away games on the docket. First up is a clash with MIT in Boston on Wednesday, Sept. 21, and then they will travel to Maine for NESCAC contests with Bates and Colby this weekend. Wednesday’s game will begin at 6:30 p.m.